While the president's security detail rushed around with little coordination looking for the source of what they thought to be a flash-bang grenade, Rebecca marched calmly towards the fallen president, while ordering Travis to check on the rhino. When she reached him, the most-powerful-man-in-the-world had awkwardly regained his feet, though his own misfired and sidelined rifle still lay forlornly on its side in the dust, apparently cursing its own ill fate.
“Are you alright, Mr. President?” inquired Rebecca as if he had merely snubbed his toe.
“What the hell happened?” he asked, looking dazed and confused.
“Apparently, it was a stun grenade.”
“How did it got there?”
“Must be from a launcher somewhere. Your men are looking for it as we speak. Meanwhile, I suggest that you resume a low profile until your men have secured the area.”
He scrambled into a depression in the ground and Rebecca entered in a more dignified fashion. Out of observation by anyone, they fell into each others arms and kissed passionately.
There came the sound of a gun shot from the direction of the fallen Samson. Moments later, Travis came back, and was rendered momentarily speechless by the sight of Rebecca in the president's arms. Having regained his composure, he blurted out, “He was lung-shot once, gut-shot twice and rump-shot twice. I finished him off with a heart shot. Would have been faster and cleaner had I used a brain shot, but it would have ruined the trophy.”
Instead of thanking him, Rebecca said, “Keep this to yourself, Travis. The official story is that the president killed Samson himself with a single heart shot while Samson was charging at me.”
The two men exchanged surprised then comprehending glances, both heads slowly nodding.
At about the same time, the drone that dropped the “fire-cracker” power-lifted itself up to 2000 feet, then flew back to the jeep of Dr. Mark Lee unobserved, during which time he replayed in his mind almost in disbelief the unexpected drama he witnessed in real time on his laptop screen just moments before.
After a short lunch, Rebecca, Travis and the president walked to the downed rhino for their photo op. The president's men had already righted Samson's carcass so that it was crouching on all four, with its head resting on a rock. Most of the pictures contained all three of them, but there were a few with the president, and only the president, posing behind the lifeless hulk.
It was well past sundown when a security agent rapped on the president's tent, announcing, "Mr. President, Ms. Rebecca Bates here to see you."
"Show her in."
Rebecca appeared in a loose-fitting blouse, knee-length skirt, sandals, and a stylish hand bag which she placed carefully on the presidential desk. Without ado, they fell into each other's arms. The lanterns hanging from the ceiling, which they kept burning for an air of decency, cast no shadows on the tent walls. The security detail, according to protocol, kept a respectful distance. Their grunts and moans were audible to no one else.
The cloud and rain, as the Chinese so poetically euphemized it, came and went, leaving their bodies moist and steaming.
"It was wonderful, Mr. President, but it will be our first and last time. Once you have re-entered your forbidden Palace, it will be business as usual, for you and for me."
"I wouldn't be too sure of that," he said, almost cockily.
"How could we..."
"Hush. I have a plan for you."
When she returned to her tent, it was past midnight. As soon as she had it zipped up, she opened her handbag and retrieved a concealed video camera.